Parker saw him walk into the hardware store again and work his way around the outer aisle. Parker was helping a customer pick out paint and wondered if the good-looking man would work his way over to Parker's station, being attracted to Parker, or if this was the hardware store he had always come to and Parker just hadn't noticed him before his visit the other day. Parker regretted that the stimulating exchange had gone south the last time Gabe had been in the store.

Gabe. That's right, Parker thought. The man had told him his name was Gabriel, but that he preferred being called Gabe. He was all the things that Parker found arousingly attractive in a man, and a couple of things Parker found scarily attractive too. He was older. Parker was twenty-five, but he'd always gone with an older man. He liked to be daddied. The man wasn't exactly old, though. Maybe in his thirties. And he was good looking and built strong. He'd shown Parker a nice, easy smile when they'd talked before and the man had had an easy way of moving in to show interest in Parker-if, indeed, that was what he'd done. Under the circumstances Parker was a bit confused and more than a bit afraid.

The scary attractions were that Gabriel-if that's what his name really was-was black and he had a colored right sleeve tattoo that peeked out below the sleeve line of the polo shirt he had been wearing. A black sex partner and one with extensive tattooing were both worlds beyond anywhere Parker had ever gone.

There weren't that many black people who came to this small beach town-and practically none of them lived in this area-and tattoos. The combination spelled danger and taboo in Parker's mind. He kept more to a group of friends who enjoyed girlie talk and more talk than action, although all had experienced sex with men-or claimed they had. His experience and the experiences his friends talked about were usually with middle-aged businessmen coming into Gaucho on the sly for just a bit of sucking or, at the most, a quick fuck in the backseats of their cars in the dimly lit parking area. Something vanilla that Parker and his friends would feed on for weeks as they sat at a table together at Gaucho and shared coquettish stares with men bellied up to the bar.

The most flamboyant Parker got was that he occasionally had a "gone wild" Saturday night and danced on one of the poles at Gaucho for free drinks. He had a nice body, he knew, a dancer's body, and a face that was more pretty than handsome, And he was a favorite dancer for the Saturday night crowd at Gaucho. He usually had to be pretty pissed to dance the pole, though, as he wasn't the exhibitionist that some of his friends were. Truth be told, however, he was more in demand than any of his friends were.

Despite his shyness toward any man sniffing around him with any sense of danger or roughness to him, Parker had flirted with Gabe when he'd come into the store three days previously. Like today, Gabe had moved around the store, ostensibly looking at a variety of goods, but every time Parker thought to look in his direction, the black man would be looking at him-and smiling. And Parker was smiling back. He couldn't help himself. The man just looked too attractive and arousing.

When Gabe finally came up to him that first time, it was to use a variation on a line that so many men on the make with Parker in the store used. But when Gabe said it, all sorts of bells and whistles of interest went off in Parker's mind. And not only in his mind; his body was telling him he was interested in this man too.

Parker had opened. "Can I help you? Were you interested in paint?" Parker worked mainly in the paint department and that's where he was standing at this moment.

"I already have an eight-inch screw driver, so I guess it's paint I'm looking for today, at least at the moment."

"Well, screw drivers are interesting, but what I can help you with is paint," Parker had answered. He'd added a little smile to convey that he understood the code Gabe was using and wasn't turning away from it.

"I really do need paint," Gabe had said. "I've just bought a small vacation house here at the beach and it's sadly in need of a coat or two of paint. So maybe you can help me with that for starters. My name's Gabe-short for Gabriel, by the way."

"For starters?" Parker asked. "And, umm, my name is Parker." He lifted his thumb to draw attention to the store name badge he was wearing. The guy had already made a point of looking at his name, so there was nothing untoward in giving it to him.

"Yes. Me being new here in the area maybe you could help with where the best place to go for this or that is. You look like you might know. But, the paint. I'm not sure what colors I need-what would fit in with the beach community here? Do you guys ever leave the store to help a customer choose something like the right paint? I think I need someone in the know here to actually look at the house."

"Yeah, we make house calls . . . sometimes," Parker said, thinking that the guy moved kind of fast, if he wasn't misinterpreting the conversation. It was obvious by the way the guy had been eyeballing him that he was interested. But, although Parker had almost involuntarily responded because the man was such a hunk, he was black and he had those tattoos. This wasn't Parker's style at all. And maybe moving fast was a cocky black thing that was something beyond the pace he could keep up with. Parker didn't want to be send any false signals here that got him in too deep.

"But obviously not today-not now," he answered. "It's raining like there's no tomorrow out there now."

"I see," Gabe said, turning and looking out of the plate glass windows at the front of the store as if he just now was noticing the rain outside. "So, maybe a rain check on that."

"Yeah, that would be wise," Parker answered.

"I was going to ask where there was a good place to pick up a beer in this town too. Rainy days are good for supporting the local taverns."

"We have all kinds of beer joints and bars here," Parker said. "It sort of depends on the kind of place you'd be comfortable in."

"I've heard of a place called Gaucho. That sounds like a comfortable place. I'm looking for a guys' place."

Parker snapped his eyes around to look into Gabe's face. And he saw that Gabe was looking pointedly at him. More signaling, and pretty clear signaling, Parker thought. Gaucho was a gay bar-the one where he sometimes danced the pole on Saturday nights. He looked Gabe over again, still finding him attractive and arousing, even though he knew he shouldn't. He was still trying to formulate what to say next, knowing he should send out the signal that he went with a different crowd. But he couldn't say he wasn't interested and be telling the truth. Gabe saved him the decision of what to say.

"I've already been in there-at Gaucho-on Saturday night. Liked what I saw. Wondered if that's the only bar of that kind around."

So, he knew. He knew before he even walked up to Parker. Parker had danced the pole at Gaucho on Saturday night. And the place had been packed and filled with cigarette smoke. This Gabe could have been in there while Parker was dancing the pole, and Parker could have missed seeing him while Gabe could hardly have missed seeing Parker dancing the pole.

"What time do you get off work?" Gabe asked. "You could take a look at my house and I could stand you a beer at Gaucho for your trouble."

But before Parker could answer-before he decided what he wanted to answer and reconciled that with what he knew he should answer-two things happened. First a woman drifted in who wanted a can of paint mixed to the color of her choice and was a bit pushy about being served right away, and, second, the family arrived. As Parker turned to the paint-seeking woman to tell her he'd be with her in a moment, out of the corner of his eye he caught Gabe turn and step back as a young black woman and two of what obviously were her-and Gabe's, as well-young kids showed up. The woman was closing an umbrella and the boy and girl were brushing rainwater off the slickers they were wearing. All three of them were gushing at Gabe about what they'd found in the variety store next door.

When Gabe had a moment to turn back to Parker to get an answer on when the work day was over for him-and evidently then to move into reiterating the offer of a drink at Gaucho-Parker had let the circumstance make the decision for him and had moved off with the woman customer toward the paint-mixing machine.

And here it was, three days later, and the man was moving around the store, ever closer to him, waiting for Parker to be finished mixing paint for another man. This time there was no evidence of Gabe's family.

When Gabe got to him, he politely stood to the side, paint cards in his hand, while Parker finished up with an older man who was looking askance at the hulking black Gabe with something of a mix of slight fear and disapproval in his face. This was an affluent beach town in the American south, where blacks had been confined to the service industries for generations and lived and shopped elsewhere. It only was in recent years that there were blacks affluent enough to be building summer homes here as well-and needing hardware stores such as this.

And admittedly, with his overpowering musculature and that tattoo design peeking out below the right sleeve of Gabe's polo shirt and also up on his neck on that side, Gabe could be seen to be somewhat intimidating.

"Yes, sir, may I help you?" Parker said as he finished with the older man and turned to Gabe.

"So, we're going to start from the beginning again?" Gabe asked, an easy smile on his face and amusement in his voice. "If so, I'll note that I already have an eight-inch-"

"Do you want those colors mixed up? Interior or exterior?" Parker broke in, nodding his head toward the older man who was shuffling off toward the cash registers none to swiftly.

When he was gone, Gabe said, "Sorry. I don't really know if these are the colors I want. Something for the outside walls and something for the shutters and trim-something that the community here will not criticize a black man for when painting his house. I thought you had agreed to come look at the house when it wasn't raining and advise me. It hasn't rained for two days. I gave you my phone number. I thought we were going to arrange for you to look at the house."

It was Parker's turn to say he was sorry.

"What is it? I thought we were doing well. The way you looked at me, I thought I had a chance. I know you dance at Gaucho, and I thought that meant you were gay. Not so?"

"Yes, I'm gay," Parker said.

"And again, the way you looked at me, I thought you were interested. Is it because I'm black?"

That was part of it, and because he was built football-player big and because of that tattooing. Just a whole different world. But Parker couldn't say that, because all of that was just as much why he'd given Gabe the interested looks he had-and why his body had reacted-and still was reacting-to the man as it was.

But there had been a more immediate reason. "I don't mess with married men-especially ones with young children. Sorry, that's just it."

"I'm not married. I don't have . . . oh, you saw Raisa and her kids the other day. Raisa's my sister. The kids couldn't wait to see the beach house I'd bought until after I'd gotten it all fixed up. They were just down for the day. They live up in Charleston. I'm not married. I'm not attached. I top men. And I fancy you. You dance a pole in the most sexy way, so I thought . . . hell, if you let men fuck you, I'd like to be one of those men. Is that clear enough for you?"

"Yes," Parker said, casting his eyes down, automatically taking a subservient position to Gabe's dominance. And trembling in the bowing to the dominance.

"I'm sorry. Am I scaring you?"

"Yes, a little."

"But it excites you a little too, doesn't it?"


"Well, I don't want to leave the wrong impression. I don't bite. I won't hurt you. I don't fuck rough-unless it's something you want." As if to prove this point, Gabe took a step back.

Parker looked up into his face. "If you'll give me your address, we can arrange a time for me to come by and advise you on colors."

"And perhaps you'll come inside?"


"I checked with the manager on when this shift is over. I can wait the twenty minutes and we could go over together. I could drive you back to your car after we're done."

"Doesn't look like that will work today," Parker said, looking beyond Gabe toward the plate glass windows at the front of the store. "Looks like the rain has swept in again and is settling in for a while. I'll want to look at the house in the sunshine. And, well, I already have plans for after work today. Sorry."

"So, is this another no? I can live with that if so. Just tell me."

"No, it's not a no. It has to be another rain check, I guess. Give me your address. I'm off tomorrow. I can be there at 1:00 p.m. Sorry, I'm a late sleeper."

Gabe came in close then and put a hand on Parker's arm. It was the right hand and the movement caused his shirt sleeve to ride up higher, showing more of the swirling tattoo there in vibrant colors. Parker shuddered.

"If you let me, I can be very good to you," Gabe whispered. "I'll give it to you any way you like."

Parker shuddered again, his mind aswirl with the blackness of the man, his musky, heady scent when up close, the intriguing and primeval feeling that tattoo of his gave Parker, the easy way in which he talked about fucking a man, about fucking Parker-and, not least, that reference to an eight-inch screw driver. Parker had a feeling that wasn't an exaggeration.

* * * *

It was only 12:30, but Parker had found the beach house faster than he thought, and he didn't think Gabe would be upset if he arrived early. The house was in a more upscale section of the seaside than he thought it would be and was right on the ocean. Very expensive real estate. It wasn't a large cottage, but it was in a nice setting and looked like it had been kept up well. The siding was faded-white wooden shingles, and, to Parker's color sense, he thought a colonial blue paint with reddish-purple trim would fit into the neighborhood perfectly.

He was to regret that he'd arrived early, though, because when he got to within sight of the cottage, a young man was emerging from the doorway. He was pulling his T-shirt on and his long, black hair had obviously just come from the shower. Gabe stood inside the doorway, just in low-slung shorts-showing magnificent musculature and a tattoo in a riot of color covering his right shoulder and pec-and a coffee cup in his hand.

Parker didn't like the idea of being just part of a revolving stream of young men in Gabe's bed, so he turned around and walked back to the main road and to his Subaru Baja and drove off.

That evening, at Gaucho, Parker's gaggle of friends gave him a rough time about what he almost had done.

"That black hulk?" Jeremy asked. "How could you even think of going with him, honey? Why he would have reamed you a new one. He plays for a much more dangerous team than you do. How big did you say he was again?"

"He alluded to eight inches," Parker said, staring down into his beer glass. Everyone at the table was skimpily dressed. At least he had an excuse. He was going on the pole in a few minutes.

One of the guys moaned theatrically and fanned his heavily made-up face with a napkin.

Jeremy grimaced and shuddered. But it too was theatrically done, and one of the other friends of Parker, the redhead, Sean, picked up on that immediately. "You just wish for an eight incher, sweetheart," he barked at Jeremy. The bark was concluded with a cougher's hack.

"I know who you mean," their Hispanic friend, Ramon, spoke up. "I think he's the guy who runs a salvage yard over in Johnsonville. Names Hal something. Smith, I think. And the guy with the long black hair you saw might be Gwen-in her man phase. I hear that salvage yard black man put Gwen in the hospital he was so big cocked and rough."

"Gabe. He said his name was Gabe," Parker said.

"Man ain't gonna give you his real name if he's gonna split you and put you in the hospital, is he now?" Ramon retorted with a snort. "Of course you'd probably be grinning on the gurney when they rolled you into the ER."

"You people aren't helping," Parker said in an exasperated voice.

"We're helping in keeping your insides from being all cut up, sugar," Sean said. "I think you can thank that guy with the long black hair from you goin' into that cottage and to your funeral. And you can thank us for bringing you back to your right mind."

"Still, handsome you say, and muscular and black and with an eight incher," Jeremy said dreamily. "And a tattoo covering his bulging tit? Oh my, oh my."

"It's time for me to go on. Thanks for your usual nothing," Parker said, as he rose from the table and moved toward the stage where there were two poles and a DJ's booth.

"Don't mention it. Glad to help, sweetie," Ramon called after him.

Half way through his set, Parker saw Gabe-half sitting and half perched on a stool at the bar. He was wearing tight jeans, and the way he was sitting projected the bulge out at his crotch. Parker gave a shudder-but one with curiosity and arousal mixed in with the fear-at seeing the bulge. He could well understand the eight-inch claim. It didn't just bulge. There was something snaking far down the man's left pant leg. He was wearing a button-down shirt that wasn't buttoned more than two places up, and his perfectly sculpted muscular torso was visible. The tattoo on the right shoulder extending out to cover his bulging right pectoral was on full display.

All during Parker's dance set, he fought with himself. He'd go straight to Gabe after getting off the pole. He take Gabe into one of the back rooms and let the black hunk do whatever he wanted with him. No he wouldn't. He'd heed his friends' advice. His zany friends. When had they ever given him good advice before? Even the suggestion of eight inches scared him. But it thrilled him too. And if they were thick inches. Ow, ow, ow. But Oolala, too. If he just didn't look like he would give it so rough. The size of him and that tattoo. What kind of man gets a tattoo like that? What else could he be advertising but that he would give it rough?

A man in control, that's who. A man who knows what he wants and takes it.

The set came to an end, and Parker had made his decision. But now when he looked up, Gabe wasn't alone. There was a blond preppy college type guy talking to Gabe, their faces very close together. As Parker climbed down from the stage, still able to move naturally in more than one direction-back to the table of his friends or toward the bar where Gabe was perched-he saw Gabe rise off his stool and follow the preppy blond out of the entrance to Gaucho.

Pretending that the decision he'd made had been a different one, Parker turned toward the table of his friends, where he sat and started tuning into the conversation as he walked, pissed off that the topic really hadn't changed.

"Well, all the black men who've done me had at least eight inches. And they were rough."

"Honey, the last black man who did you probably was just homeless with a year's accumulation of soot and he was using a garden hose on you."

When Parker left the bar, sure enough, it was raining again. Lately he'd felt like it was continually raining on his life. He wondered where he could get a rain check just for getting the loving he was aching for. Loving without all the ache that went with it.

* * * *

Parker decided that he needed to be professional about the color advice for Gabe's beach house. And he had found some colors to suggest. The man was a customer of the hardware store and had asked for help. The beach out by Gabe's place also looked inviting and he was off this Sunday. So, he decided to knock off two opportunities with one ride up to Gabe's upscale neighborhood. He wrote a note to go with the colonial blue and purplish-red color cards he'd pulled, put them in an envelope with Gabe's name on it, pulled on a Speedo and a T-shirt, grabbed a towel and his car keys, and headed up the coastal road. He'd just slip the envelope in Gabe's mail slot. The man probably wouldn't even be home.

When he got to Gabe's house, having walked across the dunes from the side of the road, where he'd left the Baja, he approached as if he was going to rob the place, slipped the envelope through the mail slot, and padded off for the beach. If he regretted that Gabe hadn't caught him in the act, he didn't admit as much to himself.

He was lying on the towel on the sand, taking in the rays, when Gabe rose up like a glorious Neptune out of the ocean just a few yards up the beach. There was no avoiding seeing each other. Parker shrank toward the side of his towel as Gabe walked over to him.

The man's body was magnificent, just as Parker knew it would be. He'd seen most of it exposed before, but the Speedo Gabe was wearing was a chocolate brown, which gave the impression that he was naked. In any event, the Speedo was so tight that the material did nothing to disguise the long, thick curve of his cock. Maybe more than eight inches. In his nakedness, the multicolored tattoo covering his right shoulder and bulging pectoral stood out wild and primordial as never before. His thighs, which Parker was seeing for the first time, were those of a soccer player or football halfback.

Parker's body ached for him. The bulge at Gabe's crotch hadn't been noticeable from a distance, but as he moved closer to Parker, it became the focal point of the man. Parker could hardly breathe when Gabe reached him and crouched down on his haunches beside him.

"You came here for me?" he asked.

"I wanted to deliver my advice for the house colors-you're a store customer. I wanted to do my job. And while I was here, well, the beach here is better than it is down where I usually go."

"So, what about the colors?"

"I put color cards in an envelope and put it through your mail slot. I could tell you what-"

"I don't give a shit about color advice. I don't plan to paint the house. I think that weathered white with weathered gray trim suits the place perfectly."

"You aren't painting the . . . ? So all that was-"

"Just a plan to get you out here so I could fuck you, yes. And you're here, so I guess you want to be fucked. You didn't show the other day, though. We made an appointment and you didn't show. Does me fucking you have you that scared?"

"You know it does," Parker answered in a small voice. "I did come out, though. I was early. A dude was leaving your house. You'd just fucked him obviously. I didn't want to be just another guy you were fucking that day."

"You wouldn't be just another guy. I've been concentrating on fucking you, not anyone else this week. There's no need for you to be scared. I'll treat you right. And you must have seen the guy who's replastering the kitchen leave. He got himself all grotty, so I let him shower and change before he left. Yes, he wanted me to fuck him. That's why, I'm sure, he angled to get in my shower. But he's not my style. You're my style."

"I'm not a blond college preppy type. Last night, the guy you left with-"

". . . had seen me arrive in my Corvette. He was interested in the car. I took him out to show the car to him. When I returned, you were in the midst of that giggly klatch. I like that you're a bit girly, but I'm not going to wade into a passel of cats like that to bring you out. I came for you last night, but I need you to meet me half way. I need for you to let me know you want me to fuck you. If you aren't here because you want me to fuck you, just say so."

Parker sat up and cupped the back of Gabe's neck and drew his face in for a long, lingering kiss.

"Is this enough of a signal?" he asked in a ragged voice.

"I can tell you want it," Gabe whispered, "But I also know you are holding back-that you're scared." He took one of Parker's hands in his and guided it under the waistband of the brown Speedo. Parker shuddered at the feel of the mammoth hard cock. "Don't be afraid of it," Gabe murmured. "When I put it in, you'll be open enough for it. Don't be scared of it. It's going to make love to you in ways you've never experienced before."

Parker shuddered, and he involuntarily was trembling, but he forced himself to pull the cock out of the Speedo, lowering the waistline to below Gabe's heavy balls. Leaning over more and holding and separating the balls in his hand, Parker opened his mouth over the bulb of the cock and began to suck it.

Yes, he wanted the cock inside him.

After several minutes, Gabe gently pushed him back, took his hand, pulled him up from the towel, and said in a low, hoarse voice, "Let's go into the house and shower first. We're getting sand into everything. I want to do this right."

Parker was showering when Gabe entered the shower, all massive muscle and an erection sticking out a mile. Parker moaned as Gabe turned him to the shower tiles, under the cascading water, palmed Parker's belly and moved his legs to spread and pull them away from the wall, with Parker's buttocks jutting out from the wall, and knelt behind him. Parker's forearms were raised to anchor himself against the slick wall, and he pressed his cheek into the tiles, moaning as Gabe's tongue went to his asshole and Gabe's hand pulled Parker's cock and balls through his legs.

Gabe worked Parker's ass for a good half an hour to open him up, alternating between tonguing his hole and stroking his cock with his hand and giving Parker's cock and balls the benefit of his sucking mouth. Parker was begging for it when he heard the snap of the condom being rolled in place. He had come long before that and knew that he was coming again soon.

Even with all that preparation, Gabe didn't just slide in. But he took his time and gave Parker all the attention he needed in kisses and stroking with Gabe's hand as he slowly worked the cock inside Parker's channel.

Parker was panting and Gabe too was breathing heavy when Gabe whispered in Parker's ear, "That's it, baby. I'm all inside you now. I knew you could do it. Now I'm going to take you to heaven."

Gabe didn't go further for a few minutes though, holding there, fully inside Parker, his cock throbbing, teasing Parker's channel muscles to shimmer and open more to him, as Parker whimpered in response to the full possession. More than eight inches he again thought. He turned his face to Gabe's and they sank into a deep, tongue-sucking kiss.

Parker writhed and cried out in ecstasy, groaning his pain-pleasure and letting Gabe know he was hitting all the spots as Gabe proceeded to pump him to heaven. Long, deep, relentless strokes with varied intensity and rhythm that kept Parker off guard and murmuring, "Yes, like that, just like that. God, you're huge. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck me."

Later, spent from his third ejaculation, Parker was sitting in Gabe's lap in the middle of Gabe's bed next to a large window overlooking the never-ending lapping of the surf onto the beach. Gabe's legs were stretched out behind Parker, and Parker's torso was cantilevered back, supported by Gabe's strong hands on his waist. Parker's legs were wrapped around the small of Gabe's back, holding the black giant's cock inside Parker to the root. Parker's head was thrown back, his eyes focused on the ceiling of the bedroom, his tongue lolling out of his mouth, his arms dangling at his side. Gabe was gently moving his hips, having taken up the rhythm of the sound of the waves rolling up on the shore, pulling slightly out during the sucking sound of the waves pulling back off the beach, and then pushing in again with the return of the waves.

Parker's softening cock was nestled in gobs of his white cum dotting Gabe's flat belly. Parker marveled at the gentle, yet total ways in which Gabe had taken him. Not the wild man at all, but a masterful, inventive lover. He was moaning but he also was purring.

"Hush," Gabe whispered, giving a low laugh. "Do you hear that?"

"What?" Parker murmured.

"Do you hear the rain on the roof? It's raining again."

"Who gives a fuck if it's raining? We're here together. There's no need for a rain check now," Parker answered. "In fact, it means I can't leave. I might melt in the rain. I have to stay here and let you do whatever you want with me. When we've recovered enough I want you to show me another one of your special positions."

"I'll show you now, baby. I'm still hard for you." Gabe was moving them off the bed, standing beside the bed, with Parker's groaning and moaning body draped, head toward the floor, down Gabe's torso. He started to pull Parker's channel on and off his cock, and Parker, his balls aching from the draining of cum, began to feel his own cock coming back to life again.



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